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Essential workers can fly for free

Singapore Airlines launches campaign to raise airline miles for essential workers like medical frontliners, supermarket employees, food delivery couriers, and public transport personnel.

Despite the halt of operations, the travel industry never fails to give back. Airlines, tour operators, and hotels have shown gratitude through creative ways, from roundtrip plane tickets to staycation packages and free travel getaways, all to offer essential workers a bit of leisure in these tense times.

Singapore Airlines has recently launched “Miles of Good,” a corporate social responsibility campaign that aims to raise 100 million KrisFlyer miles for select essential workers who have been tirelessly fighting on the Covid-19 frontlines.

KrisFlyer members will be able to nominate individuals who reside in the same country or territory with a minimum donation of 1,000 miles. Eligible nominees include healthcare workers, public transport workers, supermarket employees, cleaners, as well as food delivery courier and postal services personnel. Members can also donate miles without making any nomination. They may submit their nominations and donate their miles via the Miles of Good campaign landing page on SingaporeAir.com.

Singapore Airlines will contribute 30 million miles for the campaign all while hoping to raise another 70 million KrisFlyer miles from donations. Nominations end on Aug. 10, although members have up to Nov. 20 to donate their miles.

Eligible nominees who will be contacted by SIA will need to submit their details, provide their KrisFlyer membership number, and share their personal story via an online form on the landing page. SIA will then get in touch with the successful nominees who will receive up to 60,000 KrisFlyer miles credited into their accounts. These miles can be used to book flights on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, Scoot, and other KrisFlyer partner airlines and can also be used to redeem gift items, hotel stays, car rentals, or shopping, dining, wellness, and grooming services via KrisShop and KrisFlyerRooms.

“The Miles Of Good campaign is an opportunity for us to join hands with our KrisFlyer members, and show our appreciation to the individuals who have been working on the frontlines during the Covid-19 pandemic,” says JoAnn Tan, acting senior vice president of SIA marketing planning. “This is one way in which we can recognize the efforts of those who have been helping all of us through this challenging time.”

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Local airline launches sweeper flights

SkyJet Airlines collaborates with government offices to mount charity rescue flights for stranded individuals.

Capt. John Jatico and his crew at Davao International Airport

Travel restrictions worldwide generate economic problems or unemployment on a larger scale, all being taken care of as we speak, but in micro cases we see the inconvenience among local and foreign nationals stranded indeterminately. 

Can you imagine the risk of contracting Covid-19 in an unfamiliar place? The anxiety of being away from your family? Five months into quarantine and it’s sad to say there are still many locally stranded individuals (LSIs), mostly displaced workers in Metro Manila.

General Santos City

We need more than ever establishments that are aware of their purpose during the crisis, including domestic airlines shifting responsibilities to provide sweeper flights in efforts to help LSIs. Despite losing big revenues and subsidizing costly operations, one of the few to join the cause is premier boutique airline SkyJet, under the supervision of its chairman, Wilson Tieng. The airline has been working closely with the Office of the President, 250th Presidential Airlift Wing (PAW), OSAP, PMS, and Sen. Bong Go in mounting charity rescue flights for LSIs affected by the nationwide community quarantine. 

LSI passengers returning to Iloilo

Just recently, SkyJet has deployed a 92-seater BAE 146-200 aircraft helmed by the chief pilot Capt. John Jatico and his crew—with Davao, General Santos, and Iloilo City as the main inbound destinations. The first rescue flight to Davao successfully departed on July 18, followed by another roundtrip flight to General Santos and Iloilo on July 19 and July 20, respectively. 

SkyJet charity rescue flight crew at General Santos International Airport

Although SkyJet is looking to resume commercial operations in the next few months, the airline directs its full attention to corporate social responsibility advocacies meant to serve Filipinos and help the government in terms of aircraft provisions under circumstances that concern cross-province and inter-island travel. “While commercial passenger flights are currently halted due to the ongoing travel restrictions, we are steadfast in our commitment of to helping connect our stranded countrymen,” SkyJet Airlines’ commercial head Joseph Edward Alvarico says. He also acknowledged the assistance of Philippine Air Force, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine National Police, Department of Health, DSWD, PMS RFUs 6, 11, and 12, and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines for making the operations possible.